Can end-of-course exams make performance pay more palatable?
Over the years we've heard Florida teachers argue that they don't oppose the idea of pay for performance, just the idea of using FCAT results as the primary way to judge performance.
So maybe the state Legislature's move to replace high school level FCAT tests with end-of-course exams will ease some of the opposition to new teacher pay and evaluation guidelines that also are in the works.
State Rep. Bill Heller, a Pinellas Democrat and longtime teacher, says it's definitely possible. "I think if you take away the FCAT and you have end of course exams, you can look at what the student was learning," Heller told the Gradebook.
"I think if you have end of the course exams and you look at whether or not the students are performing on those, yeah, you have an opportunity to go back to the teacher and say, 'Here's the content that should be taught in this class and here's what it looks like your students are learning over a period of time. We need to talk about whether you're performing well in that classroom,'" he said.
To read more of Heller's interview, visit the Gradebook at noon on Saturday.